Gigabyte GeForce 8600GT 256MB
The Gigabyte GeForce 8600GT was warm to the touch, but this sub-$150 graphics card had offered blazing performance potential and top-notch overclocking capabilities for the G84 GPU and its GDDR3 memory. Selling for about $140 USD, the Gigabyte 8600GT is slightly more expensive than some of the other 8600GT graphics cards, but the price is justified by the factory-overclocked GPU and memory. If the overclocking and performance capabilities are not enough, the Gigabyte 8600GT is passively cooled using Silent-Pipe II technology, but this cooler still could be improved. The temperatures we experienced weren't damaging; however, we would have liked to see a lower die temperature. The GV-NX86T256D also includes Supreme Commander, but Linux users will need to wait a while before WINE is capable of handling this game.
The benchmarks show that the GeForce 8600GT is noticeably faster than the 8500GT, and with the sad performance-state of the fglrx driver, the 8600GT had outperformed the more-expensive Radeon X1950PRO 256MB in all of the benchmarks. The GeForce 8 Linux performance will also increase once NVIDIA releases a new Linux driver to correct their existing issues. Even though Gigabyte's GV-NX86T256D is more expensive than much of the 8600GT competition, this graphics card provides real value making up the difference and in our minds is certainly worth the $140 price tag. Whether you are looking for a mid-range graphics card to overclock or a GPU in a media PC (without XvMC), the Gigabyte GeForce 8600GT is one to add to your list and is taking home the Phoronix Editor's Choice Award.
You can discuss this article in the Phoronix Forums.
If you enjoyed this article consider joining Phoronix Premium to view this site ad-free, multi-page articles on a single page, and other benefits. PayPal or Stripe tips are also graciously accepted. Thanks for your support.